What the Apple TV Does and Does Not Mean for Gaming - The UpStream

What the Apple TV Does and Does Not Mean for Gaming

posted Friday Sep 11, 2015 by Scott Ertz

What the Apple TV Does and Does Not Mean for Gaming

With the announcement of the new Apple TV, Apple has decided to try and compete in videogames in the living room. Based on what was shown on-stage, Apple has no chance of competing with Microsoft, Sony or even Steam, but they do have a chance of competing with Nintendo. In fact, with the motion-controller built into the remote, Apple seems to be going after Nintendo directly.

The perception of Nintendo gaming, especially on the Wii or Wii U, is that it is aimed at the casual gamer. In reality, though, it is aimed at the Nintendo gamer. That is actually a very different type of gamer, with many Nintendo gamers having been dedicated for decades. Titles in the Mario, Zelda and Smash Bros. franchises sell consoles, both home and mobile. Until Nintendo releases a game for the Apple TV, there will be consumer crossover, but no consumer theft by Apple.

Playing into the casual gaming perception, Apple showed off some games that felt like they were aimed at children and mobile gamers. Things that felt like they could have lived within the Wii Sports or Mario Party catalogs as opposed to content coming from the prime titles - the ones that sell Nintendo hardware. This will give some usability to gaming on the Apple TV, but will not solidify them as a competitor.

Post presentation, however, Apple tried to show that they have plans beyond casual gaming. SteelSeries, in partnership with Apple, announced the Nimbus, an Apple TV game controller. Interestingly modeled after an Xbox controller, with A, B, X & Y buttons (colors switched), 2 analog sticks and a directional pad, a center button and bumpers, the controller is certainly intended to attempt to compete in the regular gaming market. All MiFi iOS game controller will work, though.

So, what all does this mean? It means that Apple will not sell hardware because of the games that are available on their platform, but those who already own it will be able to enjoy the games available.

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